September 16, 2019  
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Maine Environmental News
Action Alert - Monday, September 16, 2019 

Thanks for visiting Maine Environmental News, a service of RESTORE: The North Woods. MEN is the most comprehensive online source available for links to conservation and natural resource news and events in Maine (and a bit beyond; hey, we're all connected). We have posted summaries and links to 60,000 news articles and announcements. We also post breaking stories and exclusives. Be sure to check not only today's news, but take a look at the headlines from the past several days as well. Articles often come to our attention a few days after they are published. Follow us on Twitter @MaineEnviroNews. ~ Jym St. Pierre, Editor
York Beach Clean Up, Sep 23
Event - Posted - Monday, September 16, 2019 

Join a beach clean up & attempt to set a world record spelling the largest "NO PLANET B" ever in the sand. The goal is 500 people At Long Sands Beach, York, September 23, 9 am - 12:30 pm.
Tumbledown trail maintenance, guided hike scheduled, Sep 22
Event - Posted - Sunday, September 15, 2019 

A 4.7 mile round-trip guided hike up Tumbledown Mountain will include discussion of geology, trees and plants, history, wildlife and issues facing the mountain. Meet at Brook Trailhead on Byron Road, Weld, September 22, 9 am - 2 pm.
Life Happens Outside Festival, Sep 21
Event - Posted - Saturday, September 14, 2019 

L.L. Bean Discovery Park, Freeport, 10 am - 4 pm, climbing wall and games ; 6:30 pm, Food Trucks, 7:15 pm, Maine Outdoor Film Festival. Free but donations benefit Teens To Trails.
Portland Electric Car Ride & Drive, Sep 21
Event - Posted - Saturday, September 14, 2019 

Learn about electric cars during the 5th annual EV Expo. At Back Cove parking area off Preble Street, Portland, September 21, 12-4 pm, free pizza & coffee. Hosted by Natural Resources Council of Maine and ReVision Energy.
Smithsonian Museum Day, Sep 21
Event - Posted - Saturday, September 14, 2019 

An annual celebration of boundless curiosity hosted by Smithsonian magazine. At L.C. Bates Museum, Hinckley, September 21, 10 am - 4:30 pm.
Global Climate Strike, Sep 20
Event - Posted - Friday, September 13, 2019 

Take to the streets for the Global Climate Strike to make sure elected officials and candidates for office in 2020 hear us loud and clear. Strikes in Maine at Farmington and Bar Harbor, September 20. ~ 350 Action
Bryant Pond 4-H Camp and Learning Center, Sep 20
Event - Posted - Friday, September 13, 2019 

Ron and Deidre Fournier will speak about the Bryant Pond 4-H Camp and Learning Center. At meeting of the Oxford County Educators Association-Retired, Universalist Church, West Paris, September 20, 1 pm.
Pollinator plantings workshop, Sep 20
Event - Posted - Friday, September 13, 2019 

Learn about the pollinators and beneficial insects helping to make our food systems work with Eric Venturini of the Xerces Society for Invertebrate Conservation. At Hooker Family Farm, Oxford, September 20, 10 am - 12 pm, $10/family.
Common Ground Country Fair, Sep 20-22
Event - Posted - Friday, September 13, 2019 

More than 750 varied events at this annual celebration of rural living with a mix of workshops, demonstrations, music, vendors, farmers’ markets, fantastic food and more. At Unity, September 20-22, gates open daily at 9 am.
Exploring Invasive Species, Sep 19
Event - Posted - Thursday, September 12, 2019 

Mike Hanks of Cape Elizabeth Land Trust talks invasive plants. At Thomas Memorial Library, Cape Elizabeth, September 19, 1 pm; he will lead a walk at Gull Crest Field to identify invasive plants at 2 pm.
Untrammeled — The Case for Wild Nature in a Changing World, Sep 17
Event - Posted - Tuesday, September 10, 2019 

Conservation leaders Tom Butler and Mark Anderson of the Northeast Wilderness Trust will address the science and spirit of forever-wild conservation. Q&A to follow. At Maine Audubon, Gisland Farm, Falmouth, September 17, 7 pm.
10th Great Maine Outdoor Weekend featuring 130 events, Sept. 16-18
Event - Posted - Monday, September 9, 2019 

The 10th Great Maine Outdoor Weekend will be the biggest yet, with more than 130 events planned throughout Maine, September 16-18.
Nature Cruise on the Kennebec River and Merrymeeting Bay, Sep 15
Event - Posted - Sunday, September 8, 2019 

Join Cathance River Education Alliance for a nature cruise from Bath up the Kennebec River to Merrymeeting Bay. September 15, 3-6:30 pm, $42 for adults, $30 for children 6 to 12, $6 for kids under 6.
Landowner Appreciation and Clean Up Day, Sep 15
Event - Posted - Sunday, September 8, 2019 

Landowner Appreciation and Clean Up Day, sponsored by the Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife and the Maine Forest Service, is September 15.
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News Items
Maine Climate Council Would Lead State’s 100% Renewable Energy Efforts
Other - Tuesday, April 30, 2019 

North American Windpower - Gov. Janet Mills, D-Maine, has introduced bipartisan legislation to create the Maine Climate Council, which would develop an action plan and timetable for meeting the state’s clean energy goals. The introduction of the legislation has also drawn praise from the Maine Conservation Voters, the Maine Renewable Energy Association, the Nature Conservancy in Maine, the Island Institute, the Bigelow Laboratory for Ocean Sciences, the Margaret Chase Smith Policy Center, the University of Maine’s Climate Change Institute, and the Natural Resources Council of Maine.
Blue Hill Heritage Trust acquires block of forestland
Ellsworth American - Tuesday, April 30, 2019 

Blue Hill Heritage Trust celebrated the purchase of another large block of forestland with its acquisition of Meadowbrook Forest on April 26. The 2,031-acre property straddles the line between Surry and Ellsworth. It offers more than nine miles of woods road, providing ideal recreational access for bikers and walkers. The trust will manage Meadowbrook Forest as a demonstration forest, providing educational opportunities for local landowners interested in forest management practices, as well as public access for hunting and other traditional uses.
Gov. Mills signs law banning foam food and drink containers
Portland Press Herald - Tuesday, April 30, 2019 

Gov. Janet Mills signed a bill into law Tuesday that made Maine one of the first states to ban single-use food and drink containers made from polystyrene. The law prohibits restaurants, coffee shops, food trucks, grocery stores and other “covered establishments” from using containers made of polystyrene – known by the trade name Styrofoam – as of Jan. 1, 2021. Hospitals, seafood shippers and stores that sell pre-packaged meat are exempt from the ban. Plastic foam food containers are among the top 10 most commonly littered items in the U.S. More than 256 million pieces of disposable foam cups, plates, bowls, platters and trays are used every year in Maine, according to the Natural Resources Council of Maine.
EPA reaffirms glyphosate safe for users
Associated Press - Tuesday, April 30, 2019 

The Environmental Protection Agency reaffirmed Tuesday that a popular weed killer is safe for people, as legal claims mount from Americans who blame the herbicide for their cancer. The EPA’s draft conclusion Tuesday came in a periodic review of glyphosate, the active ingredient in Roundup. The agency found that it posed “no risks of concern” for people exposed to it by any means – on farms, in yards and along roadsides, or as residue left on food crops. Two recent U.S. court verdicts have awarded multimillion-dollar claims to men who blame glyphosate for their lymphoma. Bayer, which acquired Roundup-maker Monsanto last year, faces U.S. lawsuits from 13,400 people over alleged exposure to the weed killer.
Tick alert: May is Lyme Disease Awareness Month
Sun Journal - Tuesday, April 30, 2019 

Welcome to the start of tick season. May is Lyme Disease Awareness Month in the United States, and the Maine Center for Disease Control and Prevention has issued a reminder that everyone be “tick aware and tick alert,” especially as the days get warmer.
Opponents of drinking water disinfectant bring Erin Brockovich expert to Maine
Bangor Daily News - Tuesday, April 30, 2019 

The Kittery Water District has announced it will once again postpone the implementation of monochloramines as a drinking water disinfectant to allow for all parties involved to conduct further research. Meanwhile, Kittery Citizens Concerned About Chloramines believes “it’s time for a second opinion” on the conversation around the chlorine/ammonia combination disinfectant. The informal citizens’ advocacy group, which formed after the recent announcement that monochloromines would soon be added to their drinking water, will host Erin Brockovich’s water expert, Bob Bowcock, for a question and answer session in Eliot May 20.
Gov. Mills proposes climate council to pursue emissions, energy goals
Portland Press Herald - Tuesday, April 30, 2019 

Gov. Janet Mills unveiled her proposal Tuesday for a Maine Climate Change Council that would recommend ways to meet ambitious goals on lowering the state’s greenhouse gas emissions and increasing renewable energy generation. Mills made the proposal in a bill that will be considered by the Legislature alongside a mix of other climate-related bills. The Mills administration bill would also set official goals of obtaining 80 percent of electricity consumed in Maine from renewable sources by 2030 and from 100 percent renewable sources by 2050.
Janet Mills' Proposal Would Create 27-Member Climate Change Council
Maine Public - Tuesday, April 30, 2019 

Maine Gov. Janet Mills presented a bill on Tuesday to create a 27-member climate change council charged with dramatically reducing greenhouse gas emissions and transitioning Maine to what she describes as a “low-carbon economy.” But the panel will not evaluate the purported carbon reduction benefits of a controversial transmission line project that Mills supports.
90 acres conserved near Mt. Agamenticus
Seacoast Online - Tuesday, April 30, 2019 

York Land Trust has purchased 90 acres of forested land on Josiah Norton Road that had been slated for a 14-lot subdivision. The property is located within a 5,500-acre block of undeveloped forest in the Mt. Agamenticus region. The area has long been a priority of the Mt. Agamenticus to the Sea Conservation Initiative’s (MtA2C) efforts to protect 19,000 acres of unfragmented land in the region. Keeping this block of land intact helps preserve habitats of numerous sensitive species, including Blanding’s and Spotted turtles.
Hike: Seaward Mills Stream Conservation Area
Aislinn Sarnacki Act Out Blog - Tuesday, April 30, 2019 

The 44-acre Seaward Mills Stream Conservation Area was donated to the Kennebec Land Trust by Elizabeth Cole, a longtime Vassalboro resident, in June 2011. The land features a mixed deciduous forest, a stand of mature hemlocks, 3,800 feet of frontage on the historic Seawards Mills Stream and 15 acres of agricultural fields, which are leased to a local farmer. A 0.7-mile trail explores the forested part of the property and travels close to the banks of the stream much of the way.
Good News from Greenville and Moosehead Lake
George Smith BDN Outdoor News Blog - Tuesday, April 30, 2019 

Destination Moosehead Lake was awarded a grant for $15,000 to be used for public relations and marketing efforts for the Moosehead Lake region, including via a website, Facebook, Instagram, and a foldable informational and regional attractions map.
Maine nonprofits to receive $2.8M in AmeriCorps funding
Mainebiz - Tuesday, April 30, 2019 

Maine will receive $2.8 million in federal funding from the Corporation for National and Community Service. The grants will support 249 AmeriCorps members serving five organizations, including Maine Conservation Corps ($660,224) and USM’s Maine Partnership for Environmental Stewardship ($177,893).
Lisbon to build community park on Graziano Square
Times Record - Tuesday, April 30, 2019 

Six years after a landmark restaurant was demolished along Route 196, Lisbon plans to turn Graziano Square into a park, transforming the gateway to town. Lisbon’s comprehensive plan focuses on what’s now known as Graziano Square as one of the areas the town needs to focus on to make Lisbon more attractive. The town council agreed to spend up to $75,000 on the new recreation area.
Kennebec River Rail Trail mile marker toppled, broken in Augusta
Kennebec Journal - Tuesday, April 30, 2019 

Officials are looking for answers after a 20-year-old granite mile marker toppled and broke over the weekend on the Kennebec River Rail Trail. Area residents think the marker, which is close to the trail’s entrance by the Kennebec Valley YMCA, was damaged by vandals, but area police have received no recent reports of vandalism or suspicious activity on the trail.
Opinion: Recognizing the stakes, young people leading the fight for climate justice
Portland Press Herald - Tuesday, April 30, 2019 

I am a climate activist at 12 years old. In my eyes, climate justice pertains to the children. Those affected the most are often the ones who practice the most sustainable lifestyles. They are the ones who end up with nothing, while others languish in their soaring New York penthouses. My message for today is to think about these words I have written.Progress is already here. The lighthouse is brighter than it has ever been, and the children are its keepers. Change is coming – the right kind. ~ Anna Siegel, Yarmouth, seventh-grade student at the Friends School of Portland
Opinion: Limits on rockweed harvest will help protect Maine’s coast
Portland Press Herald - Tuesday, April 30, 2019 

It was a great privilege to grow up on the Maine coast. Now many creatures are scarce or gone. Seems we overdid the harvesting and polluting. Invasive green crabs are eating the clams, and increasing acidification threatens all shellfish. The Gulf of Maine is warming faster than almost any other ocean body, with unpleasant results. Sea-level rise is eroding shorelines. About 20 years ago, companies started mass-cutting the rockweed and marketing it, mostly for fertilizer. The harvest escalated from a very low level to over 20 million pounds in 2018. Before permitting mass rockweed removal, we need to know much more: What impact does it have on the fisheries? On birds and such factors as erosion? And tourism? ~ Kenneth Ross, Robinson
Letter: Maine should lead in phasing toxins out of food packaging
Portland Press Herald - Tuesday, April 30, 2019 

As a species, we seem to be spectacularly resistant to the cautionary lessons of history. Humans began using lead several thousand years ago. But we are still trying to address the use of lead in close proximity to children today. Today, as in the past, you will hear the exact same resistance to change heard decades ago – the need for “more research,” that action will hurt business and that the federal government will take care of it. It would be laughable if it were not so sad. The alarm bells are now ringing about PFAS chemicals and phthalates, which L.D. 1433 would phase out of food packaging in Maine. Why not move forward if we can show that safer substitutions are available? ~ Lani Graham, M.D., former director, Maine Center for Disease Control and Prevention, Portland
Letter: Mills should reject CMP corridor plan
Kennebec Journal - Tuesday, April 30, 2019 

I voted for Gov. Janet Mills with a confidence that she carries the heart of Maine in all her decisions. I am grateful for her stand on climate change, but I disagree with her decision to support Central Maine Power’s New England Clean Energy Connect project in western Maine, a project that our neighboring states of New Hampshire and Vermont wisely and bravely rejected, and which will surely deliver environmental damage — the very damage she seeks to avoid through her efforts to save Maine from climate change. This decision most surely is inconsistent with her goal for the future of Maine. I encourage Gov. Mills to rethink the CMP project. ~ Elizabeth M. Cooke, Rangeley and Hallowell
Generac buys Westbrook energy products company
Portland Press Herald - Monday, April 29, 2019 

A Wisconsin company that manufactures generators, Generac Holdings, has purchased Pika Energy, a Westbrook-based maker of energy products. Pika makes products designed to operate integrated energy systems for individual buildings. For instance, Pika makes controls for buildings equipped with solar panels, to help steer the energy produced to building needs, battery storage and the electric grid.
Lobster marketing group names new leader
Portland Press Herald - Monday, April 29, 2019 

The Maine Lobster Marketing Collaborative has appointed Marianne LaCroix as its new executive director. LaCroix previously served as the group’s head of marketing since its founding in 2013. LaCroix replaces Matt Jacobson who stepped down from the position in February. In her new role, LaCroix will continue to oversee the MLMC’s mission to promote sustainability and traceability within the industry, and drive demand for live and processed products.
How GMOs Might Save the American Chestnut Tree, or Not
Other - Monday, April 29, 2019 

WBUR - To save the American chestnut tree, researchers want to release genetically engineered trees into the wild to reproduce. It would be a first — a possible breakthrough and an irreversible experiment.
Column: The dealers behind the deal
Forecaster - Monday, April 29, 2019 

According to a 2018 news release, Western Mountains & Rivers Corp. is an environmental group focused on “conservation, outdoor recreation and economic development.” Actually, WM&R is more like a wholly owned subsidiary of Central Maine Power Co. That explains why Western Mountains is such an enthusiastic supporter of CMP’s proposal to build a 145-mile transmission line through western Maine to bring Canadian hydropower to Massachusetts. WM&R was created in 2017. CMP paid for its incorporation papers. WM&R hired a lawyer to testify before regulatory bodies debating the power line. The electric utility paid for that, too. In all, CMP has given Western Mountains $250,000 and promises to provide an equal amount over the next five years. That ain’t all.
Surry Hill Community Forest campaign
Maine Environmental News - Monday, April 29, 2019 

The proposed Surry Hill Community Forest in Fayette includes over 250 acres of secondary forest growth, a 20-acre open field and two wetlands. Supporters have donated $152,000 toward the campaign. To complete the conservation project by the end of October, the Kennebec Land Trust needs to raise an additional $150,000.
As some fisheries crashed, lobster and aquaculture filled the gap
Mainebiz - Monday, April 29, 2019 

Maine’s wild fisheries have experienced numerous challenges over the past 25 years. A booming lobster resource has helped keep fishermen employed. And emerging aquaculture sectors are viewed as having great potential for diversifying the economy. As the shrimp fishery and groundfish like cod and haddock have faded as a part of Maine’s fishery, the past few decades have seen the expansion of oyster and Atlantic salmon farming. Lobster fishing has remained a constant and Maine lobster is the product most identified with the state. Yet there’s been an ongoing effort to maintain diversity in the fisheries.
Time to chase the fish stocking truck
George Smith BDN Outdoor News Blog - Monday, April 29, 2019 

Lots of anglers chase DIF&W’s fish stocking trucks, eager to get those fish as soon as they are dumped in the water. I do hope if you are chasing our stocked fish, you will release some to catch another day. DIF&W recently offered the following information about their stocking schedule this spring. You can access the information at
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